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28O            MY    COUNTRY    AND    MY    PEOPLE

in the highest examples of this art, we have structural forms
which are seemingly unbalanced and yet somehow maintain
the balance. The difference between this beauty of momentum
and beauty of merely static proportions is the difference between
the picture of a man standing or sitting in a resting position
and the snapshot of a man swinging his golf-stick, or of a
football player who has just sent the ball soaring through the
air. Just as the picture of a lady tossing her head is more
suggestive of movement than one with her head on a straight
level, so the Chinese characters written with their tops tilted
to one side are preferred artistically to those with a symmetrical
head. The best examples of this type of structure are contained
in the tomb-inscription of Chang Menglung, whose characters
give the effect of being always on the point of toppling over, and
yet always remain in balance. The best modern example of
this style is to be seen in the writings of Yu Ylijen, Chairman
of the Control Yuan, who owes his present position very largely
to his renown as a calligraphist of high order.

Modern art is in search of rhythms and experimenting on
new forms of structure and patterns. It has not found them yet.
It has succeeded only in giving us the impression of trying to
escape from reality. Its most apparent characteristic is the
effort, not to soothe us but to jar on our senses. For this reason,
a study of Chinese calligraphy and its animistic principle, and
ultimately a restudy of the rhythms of the natural world in the
light of this animistic principle or rhythmic vitality, gives
promise of great possibilities. The profuse use of straight lines,
planes, and cones striking one another at different angles can
only excite us, but they can never be alive with beauty. These
planes^ cones, straight lines and wavy lines seem to have
exhausted the modern artist's ingenuity. Why not go back to
nature? It remains yet for some Western artist to strike a
pioneer path by practising English calligraphy with the brush
for team years, and then, if he is talented and really understands
the animistic principle, he will be able to write for signboards
on Times Square, in lines and forms truly worthy of the name
of an art.

The full significance of Chinese calligraphy as the basis of
Chinese aesthetics will be seen in a study of Chinese painting